The Indian cricket team is set to take on New Zealand at Southampton in the World Test Championship final.
The WTC final will be held from June 18 to 22, with June 23 kept as a reserve day.
New Zealand, ranked second in the ICC Test rankings, were the first team to qualify for the final after Australia’s tour of South Africa was postponed earlier this year.
India, on the other hand, had to make a momentous comeback in their four-match home Test series against England. But a 3-1 win meant India not only qualified for the WTC final but also topped the World Test Championship points table.
The India vs New Zealand match in the WTC final will be exciting, but the nature of the format is such that there are chances that the match might end in a draw.
What if the World Test Championship final is a draw
India holding the top spot in the WTC points table does not mean they will be given the title if the match is drawn.
Should rain play spoilsport, a reserve day of June 23 has been assigned to make up for lost time. However, the match will be declared a draw should there be no result even after the reserve day.
If the WTC final ends in a draw, then both teams will be declared as joint winners of the World Test Championship. There is no tie-breaker scheduled.
The reserve day will only be considered if there is a substantial loss in the net playing time or a considerable loss of overs in the initial five days. Net playing time for every Test translates to 30 hours of play; six hours per day or 90 overs per day.
The reserve day will come into effect if the set time of six hours is not fulfilled or the full quota of 90 overs per day is not completed. To explain it in simple words; suppose an hour's play is lost on the first day of the Test due to rain or any other reason, then the teams can make up for the loss by the end of the same day.
But if you lose an entire day then you are certain to fall short on net playing time. This is when the reserve day will be used.